GoPro founder is now a billionaire; Foxconn buys into company


posted Thursday, December 27, 2012 at 4:48 PM EDT

For 36-year old Nicholas Woodman, founder of action camera brand GoPro, 2012 is coming to an end on a pretty spectacular high. He's just sold an 8.9% stake in eponymously-named Woodman Labs -- the company behind the GoPro badge -- to Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry for a whopping US$200 million. In the process, he's confirmed his net worth to be somewhere in the region of US$1.73 billion.

Of course, Woodman's billionaire status didn't happen overnight with the Foxconn purchase. He's by far the largest stakeholder in Woodman Labs, and as the company's worth has risen over time, so has his own. Still, his performance has been nothing short of meteroic. Less than ten years after the company was founded, Woodman Labs now has US$600 million in annual sales, and a valuation north of US$2 billion. Not bad for an outfit that was originally funded by reselling 600 belts hand-crafted in the Indonesian island of Bali from beads and shells!

New stakeholder Hon Hai is better known by its trade name, Foxconn. It specializes in manufacturing products on behalf of consumer electronics giants such as Apple, HP, Motorola, Nokia, Samsung, and Sony, but an article from Bloomberg suggests it doesn't yet have the manufacturing contract for GoPro gear. With a large stake in the company -- it now holds some 11.7 million Woodman Labs shares -- Foxconn will doubtless be hoping to see some GoPro production taking place in its own facilities.

Want to know more about Woodman and GoPro's history? Outside TV put together a rather interesting video last year...

GoPro founder Nicholas Woodman talks about his company and products with Outside TV.